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No stranger to homelessness, Novato resident fights to stay afloat

No stranger to homelessness, Novato resident fights to stay afloat
Written by Publishing Team

Audrey Butler sat on the sofa of her two-bedroom townhouse in Novato, pulled out her cell phone, and scrolled to a video of her singing an old James Brown song.

It was a warm November day, yellow and crimson leaves were gleaming outside the small compound where Butler lives near Trader Joe’s and a commuter railroad crossing. After a rocky year and a half, things are starting to get better.

Although unemployed and recovering from recent surgery, Butler sought help paying off the mortgage and maintaining electricity, hired a repairman to fix her broken furnace, was able to practice singing in her living room, and fill the house with gravel. Alto.

In two days, she was scheduled to perform at a free community event at Boeddeker Park in San Francisco’s Tenderloin neighborhood. It is a place filled with painful memories of Butler.

“I was homeless in that park,” said the 56-year-old mother. “I went to sleep in that garden.”

Butler threw her head back and laughed triumphantly. “And here, after 30 years, I will return to that garden, and I will sing.”

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